E.L. Crossley Secondary School had a big night at a business awards ceremony.

The Pelham high school won the Green Niagara Eco Action Award of Excellence for its continuing environmental program.

It was just one of the Pelham winners at the annual Ruby Awards, the Welland Pelham Chamber of Commerce celebration of business and community achievement.

In 2008, the school joined the Ontario EcoSchools Program, formed a club Environmental Advocates Ready To Help (E.A.R.T.H.) and hunted down local, regional, provincial and national grants.

With them they spruced up the school grounds, conducted pilot projects and promote features, such as refillable water bottle fountains, that caught on across the school board.

The school received the recognition Friday night at Lookout Point Country Club.

The annual awards program honours businesses and individuals in Pelham and Welland.

Chamber executive director Dolores Fabiano said with 65 nominations in 10 categories this was a record year.

It indicates a strong interest in those who contribute to the business community, she said.

Snips Landscape & Nursery took home the small business version of the Greening Niagara Eco Action Award of Excellence. The 35-year-old Pelham landscaping company on Sumbler Road always thinks “green” when planning its projects.

Gail Belchior of Financial Divorce Solutions received the Venture Niagara Award, recognition for a woman in a small business. Her Fonthill-based service assists couples to making financial decisions during a divorce.

Tim Proctor of Turf Net Sports Supplies received the RBC Business Initiative Award for growing a small business from his garage to a large Highway 20 location.

Carolyn Fast for her community development work in Welland received the Mary Anne Christoff Community Service Award.

Vinay Sharma of Welland Centennial Secondary School is the Youth Citizen of the Year Award for his extensive school and community involvement.

He was one of 17 students from Centennial, Notre Dame College School, and E.L. Crossley nominated for the award.

Bob Noyes of Coins Unlimited took home the RBC Financial Group Business Award for a 34-year-old jewellery, coins and sports card business. It recently moved to a new location on Niagara Street in Welland.

Lynn Amyotte was awarded Employee of the Year for her compassionate care giving at Seasons First Avenue retirement community in Welland.

Murray Hawryn received the Stuart Cumming Award of Merit for his contributions to the chamber of commerce and the community.

The Business of the Year trophy went to The Printing House in Welland. It was one of 12 businesses of the month.